Classic draws record crowd

SUPER FAMILY: Neil, Alex, 5, and Yvonne Welch. Picture: GLENN DANIELS

SUPER FAMILY: Neil, Alex, 5, and Yvonne Welch. Picture: GLENN DANIELS

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SUPPORT for Bendigo's Mother's Day Classic has continued to climb, with a 10-per-cent increase on last year's attendance.

Organising committee member Ben Cook said 2187 people walked or ran at Beischer Park yesterday in support of breast cancer sufferers.

"We had just over 2000 last year so it's about a 10-per-cent increase," Mr Cook said.

"It's brilliant. Every year exceeds our expectations," he said.

"It continues to get easier for us with experience and it seems people keep returning and enjoying the event.

"We've been blessed with great weather every year."

Mr Cook said the amount of money raised would be calculated later in the week.

"It will be in excess of $60,000," he said.

There's an extraordinary amount of goodwill for the event. - Gaye Harrington

There were 98 Mother's Day Classic events across the country yesterday, with proceeds going to the National Breast Cancer Foundation for breast cancer research.

"Hopefully we're one step closer to working towards finding a cure for breast cancer, and all cancers ideally," Mr Cook said.

Mr Cook owns Bendigo Fernwood Fitness, a major sponsor.

Fellow organiser Gaye Harrington was thrilled with the turnout.

"There's an extraordinary amount of goodwill for the event," she said.

"People understand what the spirit of the day is all about – to support the cause."

From left, Melissa Nicholson, Nicole Hood, Sally Anderson, Jill Miles and Pam Mawson volunteered at the Strathdale Hockey Club stand. Picture: GEORGINA HOWDEN-CHITTY

From left, Melissa Nicholson, Nicole Hood, Sally Anderson, Jill Miles and Pam Mawson volunteered at the Strathdale Hockey Club stand. Picture: GEORGINA HOWDEN-CHITTY

Ms Harrington said a small committee of dedicated people organised the annual event, with the invaluable support of volunteers.

"I am eternally grateful that people turn up to help out," she said.

"The Rotary Club is here every year."

Ms Harrington's mother Vicki Harrington brought the classic to Bendigo six years ago.

"Mum, my sister and I used to go to Melbourne to do it," she said.

"We thought 'why not start a regular event here?'"

Other major sponsors are the City of Greater Bendigo, The Athlete's Foot, Professionals Real Estate and the Bendigo Weekly.

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